This week Tory MP Heidi Allan and formerly-Labour MP Frank Field announced they were embarking on a tour of the UK to ‘blow the lid off’ austerity.
It’s hard to imagine a clearer way of saying “we’re out of touch”, except maybe wearing sandwich boards saying “we’re out of touch” – millions of people in this country live the daily reality of austerity and its horrendous consequences and millions of more know about those consequences and support Labour as a result.
Ms Allen was reportedly often on the brink of tears as she visited Foodbanks in London and Leicester according to the Guardian, saying she had ‘absolutely had enough‘ – yet her voting record shows she has voted at least sixteen times for measures to cut benefits, with an inevitably huge impact on the most vulnerable.
This combination of a sudden show of concern and a long history of creating the problem did not impress the Fans Supporting Foodbanks group (FSF), which issued a strongly-worded warning on Twitter that it would not be enabling Field or Allen – or ‘providing [them] with any photo opportunities‘:
FSF is a Liverpool-based fans’ initiative, but has linked up with fan groups around the country for similar efforts to support the most vulnerable.
The SKWAWKBOX fully endorses FSF’s stance and encourages all similar groups and all foodbanks to do the same, in order to raise awareness of the issues by making the story about the rejection of the MPs’ advances rather than by enabling their cosmetic exercise.
Heidi Allen says she wants to ‘blow the lid off’ poverty so ‘her lot’ will listen – but UN Special Rapporteur Philip Alston already did a far better job last autumn and was attacked by the government for doing so.
If you’re asked to accept a visit from the pair, send details of your polite rejection to the SKWAWKBOX.
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